When Michael Crichton, master of the techno-thriller, died in November at age 66, he left behind a completed novel, an unfinished one and a pregnant wife.
Crichton's fifth wife, Sherri, gave birth three months ago to John Michael Crichton, who was mentioned but not present at a cocktail party/tribute hosted by Crichton's publisher, HarperCollins, on Thursday night.
The publisher announced in April its plans to release Crichton's 18th novel, Pirate Latitudes, set in 1665, on Nov. 24, and an untitled 19th novel next year.
At the party, publisher Jonathan Burnham said Crichton left about 90 pages of a techno-thriller and a "lucid" outline of the plot, "a gift for another writer." Burnham said Harper Collins is close to signing someone to finish the book.
Crichton's longtime agent, Lynn Nesbit, wouldn't say much about the untitled book other than, "It's going to keep you on the edge of your seats."
She fought back tears as she recalled how Crichton, who published a novel while still a student at Harvard Medical School, hired her 40 years ago despite her inexperience.
"He told me, 'Let's grow up in this business together.' We did and we had a long run. ... Happily, he left so much behind." —Minzesheimer
And in her blog The Literary Life, Sara Nelson called the event “easily the most emotional of the fair.”
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